England’s hopes of picking up the European boys’ crown for the first time in eight years were dashed when they were beaten 4½-2½ by Italy in the semi-finals at Lindingo in Sweden last Friday.
In the morning foursomes, Tree and Ashton Turner, of Kenwick Park, Lincolnshire, won 3&2 against Giulio Castagnara and Renato Paratore, but the second game proved decisive.
Max Orrin, of North Foreland, Kent, and Matthew Fitzpatrick of Hallamshire, Yorkshire, were all square playing the 18th against Filippo Campigli and Luigi Botta.
The Italian pair drove wildly to the right but found a lie and played their second to 12 feet.
Unfortunately, Orrin left his approach short of the green, Fitzpatrick chipped to eight feet but the Italians holed for a birdie three to win one-up and go into lunch level at 1-1.
Thunder and lightning delayed the singles for several hours and for most of the time games were close. However, Orrin lost on the 18th and Fitzpatrick was all square with his opponent and a halved game was declared as fading light prevented the contest going to extra holes.
Nick Marsh from Huddersfield went one-up through 16 after his opponent’s putt horseshoed from two feet, but lost the next two holes to par to lose one-down. Patrick Kelly from Boston West, Lincolnshire, was three-down through 12 holes and never made up the deficit to lose 3&1.
Although Tree completed a solid 3&2 victory, the Italians were over the line. England then lost 4&3 to Germany in the third-fourth play-off.
In the final, hosts Sweden defeated Italy 5&2.